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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
I'm currently building a new house. In the living room I will have a custom built fire place with the TV over it. There will be some hidden compartment so put my stereo equipment and sat receiver. Since the doors will almost always be closed what would be the best way of keeping these compartments cool.
 

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I wouldn't place an HDTV over a fireplace for two reasons.
First, placing it over a fireplace will make the height too great for optimal viewing.
Second, the heat generated by a fireplace, even a sealed one, will adversely affect the TV.

Now, for the components.

I have never understood why people have to hide their components after they have spent all that money.
They aren't ugly and, to the contrary, are quite attractive, at least when they are being used. This is just a personal viewpoint.
Heat is the main enemy of electronics and airflow is important both around and through them. Placing fans behind the components convered by louvered doors might be an option but even with proper ventilation fans I would never even consider "solid" doors to cover my components, if that's what you are thinking of.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
The fireplace is electric and only for looks. With in floor heat I won't use it to heat. Like you said it is personal taste and personally would have them hidden for a cleaner look. If i was to install a fan to take out the heat and have a vent somewhere to bring fresh air in would that be enough? How big a fan would i need.
 

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How about using Freon? :p
 

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If i was to install a fan to take out the heat and have a vent somewhere to bring fresh air in would that be enough? How big a fan would i need.
That will depend on the equipment. Without any ventilation, an AV cabinet can heat up like an oven and melted, baked equipment does not work well. At minimum, you need free airflow at the back of the cabinet about 3" deep and the width of the cabinet. (A small hole for the wires will not be enough.) Wide open at the back is much better. Since fans create noise, it's best to use passive cooling. My experience with fans is that it is better to use them to enhance an adequate, passive cooling situation, not correct a bad one. You also need lots of airflow around the equipment and above it between the shelves.
 

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Most equipment draws cool air through the bottom and exhales through the top (AV Receivers & Set top boxes) If you look at the manual for each device it will tell you the suggested breathing room for each device.

If you are unable to achieve this try out these products. I am positive that you can find something similar elsewhere for cheaper but this will give you a good idea as to what you need.

Cheers and happy cooling

Tunksy
 
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